Post smartphone era almost everything changed including marketing. The way we lived, the way we communicated and everything about us was different than earlier. Marketing plan & marketing strategy has gone digital. Even before that there was a wave of change in consumer behavior, with introduction of malls and Bazaars which catered to middle class. I have seen lines of people waiting to enter those bazaars on Maha Bachat days announcing ridiculously low prices on some items. Marketing professionals struggled to achieve with their marketing objectives.
That was one moment of truth in Indian retail business where shops with tens of thousands square foot of shopping space attracted the buyers. All items were under one roof. It shook the retail culture of the city. How did the competition in local retail react? They tried better. They tried to survive with price or niche or loyalty.
Now straight to today’s Retail Market.
With online buying trend on hi speed growth track. Do city retailers need better foot falls. Are they struggling to bring the customers to their store? With online influence, is it tough to predict what will be the next move of consumers for the local retailers?
Can digital marketing/ Social media marketing be of any help to City’s retailers to increase the footfalls?
I strongly believe that the only thing which can help the local retailer’s right from a Kirana store to a big fashion store is social media marketing. My reasons are simple
- The reach can be maximized in Nagpur or its particular suburb.
- Social media Advertising is cheaper than newspapers.
- Newspaper advertising has become unaffordable.
- You need not target everyone, a sari store can target only women and reach them.
- The stores have a tendency of local area proximity, which again can be pinned & exploited.
- Social media marketing can be need-based in the season for some businesses like garments.
- Facebook now offers to showcase your products.
- Monitoring of Social media campaigns is easy.
- The progress of Social media campaigns is minute to minute and can be practically felt by the retailer.
The challenges are multiple here, but the best part is everybody knows about the reach of social media. They just are not sure if they can benefit from it just like the traditional media.
The main challenge would be to calculate ROI. In a newspaper when a retailer places an advertisement, he knows by experience that he is going to get a response. The social media is new. Now many local Nagpur people have taken their business the digital way. Some have opted for e-commerce websites but still a major chunk is balance in Social media marketing. With the time we need to generate common case studies about the responses and share it amongst the retail so that more & more people are aware of what social media marketing for retail in Nagpur can do for them.
In my discussion with local retailers mostly from the garment industry, I noticed a lack of awareness about the fact that they don’t know how they can take their business ahead with the help of social media marketing. Whether it will benefit them or not? What is the costs involved?
Some of them had a presence already but were not marketing with a clear target. Just posting on Facebook was all they were doing. They have invested lakh and lakhs of rupees into their showroom, they invest lots of money in advertising. But when I asked them about Social media Marketing they had no answers. In their opinion facebook is for social relations and what business has got to do with facebook.
I see the huge opportunity in tapping almost 10000 plus various retailers of Nagpur. A simple marketing plan can definitely boost business. As a digital marketer may be some would opt for us and some would not.
Please revert back with your comments & Suggestions